NEDA MIMAROPA OIC Regional Director Susan A. Sumbeling presented the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the economic condition in MIMAROPA in 2020 during the region’s  Dagyaw Town Hall meeting held on December 3 through  Zoom.

In her presentation of the initial estimated impact of the enhanced community quarantine on the 2020 gross regional domestic product (GRDP), Sumbeling highlighted the recorded losses in the agriculture sector amounting to PhP1.52 million and in industry and services amounting to PhP12.67 billion corresponding to at least 3.19 percent to 3.16 percent of the 2020 GRDP.

“Among the selected subsectors of industry and services, the highest loss incurred was in manufacturing, which recorded almost PhP5 million in foregone revenue,” she said. “The COVID-19 pandemic has been causing a significant disruptive impact in the region’s economy affecting our growth beyond the 2020 level,” she added.

Sumbeling also discussed the region’s GRDP performance in 2018, when it recorded the second-highest growth rate at 8.6 percent, next only to Bicol region. While it grew at a slower pace at only 3.9 percent in 2019, she noted that the 2020 GRDP data will be available next year.

Meanwhile, Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG)  MIMAROPA Regional Director Wilhelm M. Suyko recalled the region’s first Dagyaw session held on October 5, 2019, in Mamburao, Occidental Mindoro, which was graced by officials from different sector agencies and organizations and by Cabinet Secretary Karlo Alexei Nograles who presented the programs under the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of the country.

He urged the participants to actively participate and raise their questions, complaints, and recommendations on social issues. He also called for the support of the public to keep track of these issues and work together with the government for the implementation of programs and projects that would contribute to better results.

In a video message, DILG Secretary Eduardo Año reiterated in his message the importance of good and participatory governance. “In every decision and action in governance, we need you, the Filipino people, the civil society organizations and private entities to fall in step alongside the government into a whole-of-nation approach towards nation-building,” he said.

Sec. Año also shared that the government is currently utilizing digital advancements on various programs to provide more opportunities to communicate with people and take action on their grievances.

During the Dagyaw town hall meeting, which carried the theme “Lokal na Pamahalaan, Katuwang ng Mamamayan: Usapang MIMAROPA,” the following topics were also presented: status of COVID-19 cases in the region; issues on jobs and livelihood; food security and agriculture; and tourism and environment by the discussants from National Anti-Poverty Commission and MIMAROPA regional offices of the Department of Health, Department of Labor and Employment, Department of Agriculture, Department of Trade and Industry, and the Department of Tourism.

Dagyaw” is a Hiligaynon word that directly translates to “togetherness” or “bayanihan.” Dagyaw 2020 Virtual Town Hall meetings are held to tackle pressing issues and concerns of various sectors to promote participatory governance and further improve government programs, activities, and services.

The activity is an inter-agency collaboration led by the DILG, Department of Budget and Management, Presidential Communications Operations Office-Philippine Information Agency, in cooperation with the Caucus of Development Network NGOs and Right to Know Right Now! Coalition.